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Portraits of American Continental Philosophers (Studies in Continental Thought) Paperback – October 22, 1999


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Product Details

  • Series: Studies in Continental Thought
  • Paperback: 248 pages
  • Publisher: Indiana University Press (October 22, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0253213371
  • ISBN-13: 978-0253213372
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 0.6 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,885,495 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"Watson (Loyola Univ., New Orleans) features 22 scholars who teach philosophy in the US and write about, or have philosophical affinity with, such 19th- and 20th-century European philosophers as Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Husserl, Heidegger, Sartre, Merleau-Ponty, Foucault, and Derrida. The philosophers include Debra Bergoffen, Robert Bernasconi, John D. Caputo, Edward S. Casey, Bernard Flynn, Thomas R. Flynn, Patrick A. Heelan, Douglas Kellner, Joseph J. Kockelmans, David Farrell Krell, David Michael Levin, Alphonso Lingis, Bernd Magnus, David M. Rasmussen, William J. Richardson, John Sallis, Calvin O. Schrag, Charles E. Scott, Hugh J. Silverman, Joan Stambaugh, Wilhelm S. Wurzer, and Edith Wyschogrod. Each philosopher is portrayed with a short (typically six pages) intellectual autobiographical sketch, a selected bibliography of essays and books, and a full-page photograph. Most sketches describe the author's philosophical education and research and writing programs. The sketch by Bernd Magnus is different: it is a riveting and horrifying account of his childhood experiences surviving the Holocaust. The philosophers featured represent a minority movement in American academic philosophy, and therefore may not ordinarily receive the same attention that is accorded their colleagues who follow the dominant approach (analysis). This will be a useful resource, especially at institutions whose philosophy departments emphasize the study of Continental philosophy." —H. Pospesel, University of Miami, Choice, June 2000

(H. Pospesel, University of Miami Choice 2000-01-00)

About the Author

James R. Watson is Professor of Philosophy at Loyola University, New Orleans. He is coeditor (with Alan Rosenberg) of Contemporary Portrayals of Auschwitz and Genocide: Philosophical Challenges.

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16 of 19 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 6, 2000
Format: Paperback
Whatever the virtues of the American Continental Philosophy scene, the lords of SPEP and Perugia have also earned a deserved reputation for cliquishness and frequent self-promotion. When I first saw the announcement of this book, I was worried that it would provide just one more shameless platform for the canonization of second-rate thinkers. But in fact, the book left me with quite a positive impression.
Each of the 22 professors featured in the book is allotted 4-6 pages to tell us what they stand for as philosophers. Given this sort of brevity, none of those in the book can hide who they really are; their merits and vices come through in strikingly compact form.
Bernd Magnus uses his pages to present a Holcaust memoir that is among the most moving I have ever read. John Caputo gives an autobiographical account of his early religious interests that manages to be surprisingly modest. Thomas Flynn makes an equally modest statement about the past and future of Continental philosophy in the United States. Alphonso Lingis gets down to business in typical fashion, refusing to drop any names or preen any feathers in the mirror, giving us a genuinely philosophical argument in his ever-brilliant prose. There are other good chapters as well; these were my favorites.
Other chapters leave a mixed impression on the reader. Robert Bernasconi explains his recent interests with clarity and apparent sincerity, yet he is tellingly defensive concerning his limited publication record. Patrick Heelan meditates interestingly on the relation between science and philosophy, but his tone borders on abrasive in his attitude toward those philosophers who lack training in the hard sciences.
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